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Case Basics
Docket No. 
Bay Mills Indian Community
(Michigan Solicitor General, for the petitioner)
(for the respondents)
(Deputy Solicitor General, Department of Justice, for the United States as amicus curiae supporting the respondents)
Facts of the Case 

The Indian Gaming Regulatory Act (IGRA) provides that if certain requirements are met, including a compact between the state and the tribe, an Indian tribe can operate a casino on Indian lands. Under the Michigan Indian Land Claims Settlement Act, lands bought with funds from a congressionally established trust are Indian lands. On November 3, 2010, the Bay Mills Indian Community, a federally recognized Indian tribe with a reservation located in northern Michigan, opened a small casino in the town of Vanderbilt, Michigan, on lands purchased with funds from this trust. The state of Michigan sued for closure of the casino by claiming that the Bay Mills casino violated state gaming laws, as well as various provisions of its Tribal-State compact. The district court entered a preliminary injunction ordering Bay Mills to stop the gambling at the Vanderbilt casino. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit vacated the injunction and held that the district court lacked jurisdiction over some of the plaintiffs' claims, while Bay Mills' sovereign immunity bars the others.


Does a federal court have jurisdiction over activity that violates the IGRA, but takes place outside of Indian lands?

In such a case, does tribal sovereign immunity prevent a state from suing in federal court?

Cite this Page
MICHIGAN v. BAY MILLS INDIAN COMMUNITY. The Oyez Project at IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law. 20 April 2014. <http://www.oyez.org/cases/2010-2019/2013/2013_12_515>.
MICHIGAN v. BAY MILLS INDIAN COMMUNITY, The Oyez Project at IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law, http://www.oyez.org/cases/2010-2019/2013/2013_12_515 (last visited April 20, 2014).
"MICHIGAN v. BAY MILLS INDIAN COMMUNITY," The Oyez Project at IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law, accessed April 20, 2014, http://www.oyez.org/cases/2010-2019/2013/2013_12_515.